Can Rental Companies Be Held Liable For Accidents Involving Their Vehicles?

Rental Car Accident AttorneyDepending on the circumstances surrounding the accident, rental companies can be held liable for collisions that involve their vehicles. If the accident caused injuries or proved to be fatal, the compensation can be astronomical.

While rental companies are usually not held liable for this in Illinois (since the customers who use their vehicles are not employees), they can still be held responsible for unsafe practices. For example, a rental company can be held liable for a crash if the driver does not have a valid driver’s license. That’s because Illinois is an ‘at fault’ state.

Who is Responsible for Accident Coverage?

Generally, the person who caused the accident (or their insurance company) should provide compensation to cover the injuries and damages. So if you are driving a rental and another car speeds through a red light and crashes into you, the driver of the other car should pay up.

If they are driving a rental and chose insurance to pay you for damages, an extra insurance policy also comes into the picture. How it applies to your particular case depends on the facts mentioned in the insurance contract. For example, an accident involving a rental car may involve coverage from the following:

  • The credit card used to pay for the rental.
  • The driver’s vehicle insurance.
  • Your own car insurance provided you were not driving the rental.
  • By the rental company.

As mentioned before, your rental company can be held liable if they entrust a vehicle to a driver who does not have a valid driver’s license or has an expired or suspended one. This is understandable since you will have given the vehicle to an individual who may not be a good driver, is negligent or reckless in their driving. There is a reason why they don’t have a valid license after all.

Get An Experienced Car Accident Attorney!

So if you were involved in an accident with a rental car, you have the right to demand and receive damages for injuries and property damage. Get in touch with us at The Law Offices of Robert Edens for an experienced attorney today. From the time the accident occurred the insurance company for the at-fault driver will be working to reduce your claim. We can protect your rights and ensure they don’t get the better of you with aggressive representation. You can reach us at our offices in Libertyville, Waukegan, Woodstock, and Antioch, Illinois.

What to Do If You Have Been Under-Compensated by Your Insurance Company

Personal Injury AttorneyWas your vehicle completely totaled in a car accident? Even if you received compensation from your insurance carrier, chances are they underpaid on mandatory charges such as sales tax, registration, license plates and state title for your replacement vehicle.

Depending on the value of your vehicle, a total loss accident can range from a devastating collision with other vehicle(s) to striking a deer. In either case, getting enough compensation from the insurance company to cover repairs can be a challenging issue. Chances are that the insurance company will either refuse the rest or underpay you.

What to Do If You Are Underpaid

If you were underpaid, even though you fulfilled all the legal and regulatory steps required to complete your claim, you can dispute the value by taking certain steps. During this time, you may be without a vehicle, which can be very stressful. Some insurance companies will try to take advantage of your emotions and situation by underpaying or failing to pay. You can try and negotiate with the insurance company or you can sue them. However, regardless of the path you take, you need to gather substantial evidence to disapprove the insurance company’s claim. Often, compensated amounts can be low – compared with the total claim settlement amount, which are overlooked during this emotional time for you.

This means you need to collect evidence which proves your vehicle was worth more than what your insurance carrier claims. The best proof would be pictures of your totaled vehicle, as well as proof of any upgrades were made before the accident because these will affect your vehicle’s final value.

The most important thing to do is to take pictures of your vehicle before the insurance company claims it. If they have already claimed your vehicle, the only way you could reclaim it is if it only sustained hail damage and is operational or if it is nine years old or older.

After collecting proof of your claim, hire a qualified appraiser outside of the insurance company who give their professional opinion on the actual amount your totaled vehicle is worth. This can be used as evidence in court and depending on the results of the appraisal, you can either increase the settlement or file a lawsuit if the insurance company still refuse to pay any outstanding amount.

Contact Robert T. Edens, a Central Midwest Illinois Attorney

If you or someone you know has sustained a total loss on their vehicle and their insurance carrier paid for the loss out of the policy covering the car, you need an attorney from the Law Offices of Robert T. Edens in your corner. We can advise on how you can hold the insurance company liable for this misconduct. Call us today at (847) 395-2200 for a free, no-obligation consultation in Waukegan, Libertyville or Woodstock, Illinois, today. If the insurance company refuses to cooperate, get in touch with us for aggressive and quality advocacy, which can ensure you get the maximum compensation you deserve. In most circumstances, we can do so on a contingent fee basis, meaning there are no legal fees or other lawyer costs to be paid by you.

Top 3 Reasons Your Insurance Company Can Use to Deny Auto Accident Claims

Personal Injury AttorneyThe U.S. insurance industry has trillions of dollars in assets and it pays its CEOs more than any other industry. However, this does not stop them from take advantage of policyholders. Most insurance companies try to up-sell policies to their clients, even though they may not need them, or deny claims to valid insurance holders.

Unfortunately, this is the reality of insurance claims in Illinois. However, you can prevent this from happening by thoroughly reading through your policy document. Even then, your insurance company may try and reduce your claim using the fine print in your policy or possible hidden clauses. Here are some ways your insurance company can try to reduce how much they pay you after a car accident:

Policy Limitations

Every insurance policy comes with limits, irrespective of the damage, so you won’t get any coverage that exceeds it. To ensure you are covered for most damages, carefully choose a plan. While paying for higher coverage can be expensive, it will pay off because your insurer will have to pay for damages that cover it.

Also, keep in mind the type of coverage you choose will determine the specific amount your insurance company will pay. For instance, if your policy does not cover collision damage, the insurer will not pay for it if your car is involved in a head-on collision. From a financial point of view, because Illinois is an at-fault state, getting the best coverage will be in your best interest.

Prior Injuries or Surgeries

One of the first things your insurance company will do is to ask you to sign a medical authorization form. This is the worst thing you can do without an attorney present. These forms are used to search through the claimant’s medical history to pinpoint prior injuries or surgeries, which can be used to compromise their claim.

In other words, the insurance company may claim your injuries were the result of a previous medical procedure or accident, not the one your asking damages for. They may also use the information you provide to argue your injuries are not severe enough to merit damages.

Pre-Existing Conditions

If you’re living with a pre-existing condition, the insurance company may try to blame it for the accident. They may say it caused your injuries, rather than the incident itself.

For instance, if you have a pre-existing back injury that was aggravated because of the accident, the insurer may try to claim your new condition did not result from it. How can you make sure this doesn’t happen? By hiring an experienced attorney who can see right through their lies.

Whether you have been injured in a car accident and want to sue the negligent driver for damages or want to take an insurance company to task for denying your claim, call the Law Offices of Robert T. Edens today. We will put a team of professional personal injury attorneys on your case who will ensure you get the compensation you deserve and need. We represent clients in Chicago, Waukegan, Libertyville, Woodstock and Antioch, Illinois.

How to Deal with the Insurance Company Post Auto Accident

Auto Accident AttorneyWhether you are responsible for a car accident in Illinois or someone hit you, you need to get in touch with your insurance company quick. If the incident caused damages and injuries, you will have to get in touch with the other driver’s insurance company. Here is what you need to know about your options.

You Are Entitled to Benefits from Your Insurance Carrier

Depending on what your insurance policy allows, you may be entitled to certain benefits. This includes medical payments or MedPay, which takes care of your medical bills you had to pay out-of-pocket for treatment after your accident, such as X-rays, surgeries, therapy, etc. It can also pay for your medication – but only up to a certain limit.

Your insurer may also provide collision coverage for your vehicle and even allow for a replacement vehicle if your vehicle is beyond repair. If you were not to blame for the accident, they may ask the driver’s insurance company to pay for costs, via a process called subrogation. However, the amount they reclaim will not come completely to you. Your insurance company may keep a portion and give the rest to you.

If you want to ensure you get the amount you deserve, you should hire an insurance attorney to negotiate on your behalf.

The Insurance Adjuster May Talk to You

After the accident, you should expect a call from an insurance adjuster, who will get a statement from you. The worst thing you can do at this moment is entertain their request for a meeting. Their aim is to get you to divulge information they can use to compromise your case and reduce or deny your claim.

The bottom line is you should not give a statement regarding the accident to anyone other than police officers or your lawyer. You are not obligated to give a statement to anyone else. Just say you need time to think over the case, then turn the adjuster away.

Personal Injury Attorney

The Law Offices of Robert T. Edens has been representing auto accident victims in Chicago, Libertyville, Woodstock, Waukegan and Antioch for more than two decades. Get an experienced and reliable attorney to represent you against bullying insurance companies that will do anything to reduce or deny your claim. Why should you step aside and pay for injuries that weren’t your fault? Get the justice you are seeking by contacting us for a free consultation today.

What to do When you are Involved in an Auto Accident

Auto Accident AttorneyFact Finding in an Auto Accident

Accidental car crashes are more common than we would like to think. Each day, hundreds of people are injured and vehicles suffer damage in various accidents. After every auto accident, the first question on everyone’s mind is: What do I do now? If you are involved in an accident, the first thing you need to do is call the police and tell the officer about the incident. Some of the facts that would help you file a case for damages and determine contributory and comparative negligence are:

  1. The location of the accident
  2. The number of lanes
  3. The speed of all vehicles involved
  4. Travelling direction
  5. The condition of the road
  6. Place of impact on each vehicle involved
  7. The driver and the number of passengers in each vehicle
  8. The nature of the damage to the vehicle
  9. The nature of passenger and driver injuries
  10. Owner of the vehicles

These facts are just a few of the several facts you would need to make a strong personal injury claim after a car crash. A prominent personal injury attorney will help you find these and other facts related to your case. 

Determine Negligence in an Auto Accident

Negligence is a term used to determine and characterize actions that establish an arbitrary risk of harm to others. If the injuries and vehicle damage you endured was caused by the other party’s negligence, then they are legally responsible for paying your damages, including coverage for your personal injury. This is the reason why most people are looking for skilled auto accident attorneys to help determine negligence or fight negligence in case you are wrongfully accused of an accident. After the accident, the plaintiff has to prove the following facts to get compensation for alleged negligence by the defendant:

  1. The accident led to a serious injury or to expensive and hard to repair damage to vehicle or property
  2. Aggressive or odd behavior of the defendant led to the accident
  3. The defendant failed to act in a reasonable manner while driving
  4. The treatment for injuries and the repairs on the vehicle were mandatory
  5. Long-term implications of the injury caused by the accident due to the rash and unreasonable acts of the defendant.

A veteran auto accident lawyer will be able to extract evidence, collect facts and prepare witnesses, which is fundamental to institute a liability to seek lawful compensation for damages. Lastly, they will warrant your legal rights and best interests are secure during the trial.

Personal Injury Attorney

If you wish to find out more about between hidden dangers of speeding or schedule a free consultation, contact the offices of Robert Edens at (847) 395-2200 to speak with an experienced auto accident lawyer.

How a Lawyer Can Help You with Winter Sports Accidents

Personal Injury AttorneyWith the month of March bringing warmer sunnier days to the slopes, the peak season of skiing is upon us. Even though skiing is an amazing way to completely enjoy the outdoors in the winter months, so are all other winter sports. Most of these are inherently dangerous activities. One should be very careful and in control when on the slopes, lest you hurt someone gravely.

Earlier in the winter season, a high school student succumbed to injuries received due to a sledding incident that occurred at the Maine ski resort. The National Ski Patrol along with the National Ski Areas Association have collaborated to develop the ‘Your Responsibility Code’ for the safety of skiers.

Some Common Winter Sports Accidents can comprise of the following:

  • Falling from a chairlift
  • Collisions with external objects, for instance fences, barriers, signs, trees and debris
  • Collisions with other guests
  • Accidents due to failure of equipment
  • Accidents because of poor instructions by an expert instructor

Here is What the Law States about the Winter Sports Accidents:

The very first issue which victims of winter sports injuries might come across is what might be known as the “assumption of risk” principle. According to this principle, winter sports such as skiing and snowboarding have a serious risk of injuries to all the participants. Moving in a fast pace down the slippery hillside leads to a greater chance of injury irrespective of the circumstances.

On the other hand, the “assumption of risk” does not necessarily account for all the unknown factors or the numerous factors out of the norm. For example, a winter sport participant might have an idea that the resort is going to have numerous other guests who might have to be avoided when you ski down the slope. Nevertheless, they are not going to have any idea that a kid is going to sit down in the middle of the slope, leading to an unavoidable obstacle constituting grave injuries.

In this hypothetical example, parents of the child could be possibly held accountable for their neglectful behavior in jeopardizing a fellow guest. In other situations, the resort itself lets exposed rocks and/or roots lie along what ought to be a well maintained slope, leading to uncommon risks which the injury victim might not have been able to predict or assumed to be there.

Personal Injury Attorney

For more information or to schedule a free consultation, contact us online or call (847) 395-2200 to speak with an experienced professional on this topic.

Auto Accident on Old Schaumburg Rd. and Meacham Rd. in Schaumburg, IL

There was an auto accident in Schaumburg, IL on Tuesday, February 1st, 2017. The accident occurred at the intersection of Old Schaumburg Rd. and Meacham Rd. A vehicle was making a right turn on Old Schaumburg Rd. and slid into a school bus due to icy road conditions. Another vehicle slammed into the bus about five minutes later while making the same right turn. Police were already on the scene during that time. A school bus driver and one elementary school student had minor injuries and were transported to the hospital. The drivers of the other two vehicles were not injured and they didn’t have passengers with them.

Auto Accident on Old Schaumburg Rd

The Law Offices of Robert T. Edens is a Lake County personal injury law firm with offices located in Antioch. Contact us today for a free consultation.


The Law Offices of Robert T. Edens, P.C.